Leveraging operational data with employee experience to measure engagement.

There’s a lot of data being collected by the HR team, but the problems come when it’s time to convert the data into insight. There are heaps and heaps of data, but most of it isn’t processed to gain insight from it. And one of the main reasons is that there’s still not a holy grail of measuring employee engagement. Data itself is the first step, but not the last step.

You can’t directly measure employee engagement, so what most companies do is find a proxy for employee engagement and then try to connect those two with a causal link. Usually, companies measure any of the following to gauge employee engagement: 

  • employee satisfaction
  • turnover rate
  • retention rate
  • NPS
  • absence rate
  • revenue per employee
  • employee performance

You only gain real value from this data when you gain insight from it. Data by itself is just providing a sense of (false) productivity. It’s when you connect the dots and understand what the data is trying to tell you that it will start becoming useful.  

To do that, we need to find a way to leverage operational data with employee experience data across the employee lifecycle to get a true measure of engagement.

The three pillars of information management 

To gain insight and understand the true measurement of engagement, we need to ensure that we follow the three pillars of information management. Because if the data doesn’t work, the insights will be useless. 

Accurate information

The data that you collect needs to be accurate. This is where you need to have a plethora of channels with which you collect information. 

Performance reviews are good, but adding in direct and pulse surveys occasionally can provide objective information that you can use to gain insight. When it comes to accuracy, try to use multiple channels and frame your surveys so that you get as objective information as possible. 

Relevant information

This is where companies struggle the most. Either you’re in the camp that doesn’t collect enough information about the relevant data or you’re in the camp that collects every possible data out there. 

Understanding what is relevant and not depends on your ability to connect data gathering with insight gaining. We will talk about this more on the webinar, but for now, let’s go over the basics. 

When it comes to measuring employee engagement, you should collect some of the basic information like employee satisfaction, retention rate, and NPS to have a basis for gaining some insight. This won’t give you the full picture when it comes to employee engagement, but it will be a start. 

Don’t overdo it with gathering data. First of all, your employees don’t like to fill out any surveys that they deem isn’t relevant for them or if they don’t see the impact in the workplace for them. Also, you’re just making your life harder by adding in additional data points that you need to process. Do you really need to measure the acceptance rate to understand employee engagement at your workplace? 

Timely information

Employee engagement data is very timely and depends on a lot of factors. Here are just some of them: 

  • The manager of the team
  • The composition of the team 
  • The project the team is currently working on 
  • Employee’s personal situation
  • How long the team’s worked together
  • Organizational health

All of these factors can change quite fast and that’s why it’s important to gather data for employee engagement on a regular basis. A data point from six months ago might not be relevant (and timely) today.  

How to create a culture of listening

If you want to leverage your operational data with your employee experience to measure employee engagement, you will need to create a culture of listening in your organization. To do that, you can do the three following things: 

  • Design and deliver surveys. Design your surveys on our platform and deliver them to your employees on a regular basis. First of all, your employees will get used to responding to the surveys and you will get a regular stream of data that you can use to gain insight and improve the employee experience.
  • Analyze data. If there’s one thing employees dislike is filling in surveys that are not being processed. If you’re handing out surveys to your employees, make sure that you’re going to use that data to improve things in the workplace.
  • Leverage data from different systems. You don’t only have to use data from the surveys— you can leverage data from different systems in your organization. We will talk about this more in the webinar.  

Conclusion

Measuring employee engagement doesn’t have to be “rocket science.” With the right mindset, a couple of clear data points, and a way to connect all of them, you will gain the right insights into employee engagement at your workplace.